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Oh you BYT brethren, rushing to your keyboards to e-pen your Top 10 Films of 2006.

I will choose to remain completely personal in divulging my favorites to willing, impressionable and pro-Cesar readers. Please remember that a couple of these were made previous to 2006 but released this year in the US (whether limited or wide), you film geeks.

In no particular order

(though it really is a pity that I cannot type some of these on top of each other and still have them be legible):

  1. The Descent (UK). Terrifying, yes. Well-made for a horror flick, yes. Any of you who were not at least unnerved by this film are either stone cold dead, lawyers or directly related to Satan himself.
  2. Borat:Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan(UK). Folks, I think it is time for us to come to terms with the notion that the rest of the world doesn’t really think too highly of us right now. Fortunately, Sacha Baron Cohen’s genius has made this idea (and attack, tee hee) readily available to the lay public. Come on, let us learn to laugh at ourselves because the rest of the world already does.
  3. Caché (France). Ooh how we hate the French. But ooh la la, how we love their movies. Director Michael Haneke’s meditation on voyeurism, privacy and obsession turns this film into more than just your run-of-the-mill thriller. It becomes a reflection on contemporary society, ooh aah. By the way, did you notice that there was no soundtrack? Creepy French people.
  4. Casino Royale (UK). After about 15 years of bitchy, whiny, I-don’t-do-work Bonds, I think we may have found our est 007. Daniel Craig infuses humor, charm, toughness, lgood looks, and this little thing we call “good acting” into his work to make this latest installment seriously entertaining. Props to Eva Green for still managing to give me a hard-on without bearing her fun bags.
  5. The Queen (UK). Helen Mirren. Favorite line: “Move over, Cabbage.”
  6. Little Children (USA). F*ck yeah, Winslet, Wilson and Connelly. F*ck YEAH! Also, intense too, like Cache.
  7. Jesus Camp (USA). Scary, the times in which we live. Unbiased and unrestrained the two directors of this film were given full camera access into what goes on at these events known to the public as “Jesus Camps.”
  8. Sophie Scholl: The Last Days (Germany). During World War II, there was a girl named Sophie Scholl who was fundamentally against everything for which the Nazi regime stood. Today she is a national hero. This story, based on the book by the same name, details the days leading up to her trial and execution. She was only 20 years old. This film is as good as 2005’s Downfall.
  9. Fateless (Hungary). The most creative and moving Holocaust film to come out in years. Based on a true story.
  10. Volver (Spain). Though perhaps not Todo Sobre Mi Madre, this movie only further entrenches the master director Almodóvar into a category all his own. Also, kudos to Penelope Cruz for moving the entire theatre to tears and laughter within a span of 5 minutes (see recent post).

Movies that El Chico also liked for one reason or another but sadly could not fit in the Top 10 because he needed to practice some restraint:

  1. Manderlay (Denmark/USA). Lars von Trier’s second of the Dogville trilogy. Shut up, guys, I LIKE von Trier.
  2. Lower City (Brazil). This movie is a sort of a Y Tu Mama Tambien for adults.
  3. The Night Listener (USA). Toni Colette needs to be in more movies. And Robin Williams did not annoy me.
  4. Unknown White Male (UK/USA). The movie was ok but the premise of this true-life documentary is mind-blowing. Basically, what happens when, at age 35, your memory is completely erased. Through video, this guy tells the story of his best friend who is stricken with a rare form of amnesia.
  5. Quinceañera (USA). Hilarious, quirky, witty and real, this movie presents a story of LA that doesn’t involve Hollywood, coke, guns, or Austrian-American governors.

Filmic Event of the Year:

Viva Pedro! (Spain/USA). My sentiments exactly!

There are a bunch of movies I left out like Men of Earth, The Last King of Scotland and 3 Needles. That is because I’ve not yet seen them. But I will I catch them soon, I will.

And now folks, please update your Netflix queues accordingly.

And remember, this list reflects only the opinions of its writer. So if you’re feeling left out, get some movies and make your own list!